Dealing with Dupuytren’s
To the Editor: I’m 29 years old and have been dealing with dupuytren’s since I was 19. I developed a nodule at the base of the ring finger of my right hand.
I first noticed this when I was 19. Over the next 3 years the nodule grew in size and painfulness, until I got medical help from my doctor and a surgery was done to remove the nodule. Very soon after that I developed a large mass of scar tissue over the incision. About 1.5 years after the surgery I began to notice the typical cord developing. The progression of this disease has, thankfully, been slower than initially predicted. (I have genetic hand issues on both sides of the family. knuckle pads, which I have developed, from my mother and dupuytren’s from my fathers side. My grand father had to have several fingers amputated due to dupuytren’s.)
I have since developed another nodule on the same place on my left hand and I suspect they may be forming on my feet as well. The options available to me are surgery and or injection. Since surgery made things worse, that is a last resort, and the injections do have a failure rate that include greater harm being done. I currently stretch my hand/finger rigerously on a daily basis. This quite process is painful. I have regular daily discomfort from the dupuytren’s in my right hand. I have read your case about the carpenter using a topical cans is salve to treat and reduce his dupuytren’s and I would be very greatful for more information. I have two kids and a third on the way and have no desire to do anything elegal or unethical. If there is a a way to reduce this progressive disease and give me comfort and greater longevity with the use of my hands I would like to investigate it!
Note to S: We have brought your email to the attention of Dr. John Lovejoy, who wrote the case report in our current issue. Where do you live?